How to watch the Sturgeon moon – the last supermoon of the year


The Sturgeon moon – August’s full moon – will take the night sky this week, offering spectators the last supermoon of the year.

This Sturgeon moon is the considered to be fourth supermoon in a row after the Buck moon in July, Strawberry moon in June and Flower moon in May. A supermoon refers to a full moon when the Moon is within 90% of perigee – its closet approach to Earth.

August’s full moon – also known as Sturgeon Moon – rising over Boise foothills in 2020. / Credit: / Getty Images

Starting in the 1930s, the Maine Farmer’s Almanac began publishing Native American names for full moons, NASA said. Based on this almanac, Algonquin tribes that lived in the northeastern U.S. called the full moon in August the Sturgeon moon after the large fish that were more easily caught that same time of year in the Great Lakes.

In terms of viewing the supermoon, it will appear seven degrees above the east-southeastern horizon, NASA said. The Sturgeon moon will peak on Thursday night, at about 9:36 p.m. EDT, according to NASA. It will also appear nearly full on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

The Sturgeon moon may outshine another major celestial event on Thursday: the Perseids meteor shower. The most popular annual meteor shower, which is active from July to September, will peak between Friday and Saturday.

NASA suggests the best time to look for the meteors will be after midnight Saturday, and viewers need to be far from light pollution. The agency said you need to look north and away from the Moon’s gaze.

The next supermoon won’t be until August 1, 2023 and August 31, 2023.

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